Saturday, April 26, 2014

My Brain on Books XIV

I am reading for The Office of Letters and Lights the folks who bring us NaNoWriMo today as I love what they are doing for literacy with their Young Writer's Programs and because I've participated in NaNo every year since 2004 and will again next November and am currently doing Camp NaNo.  I have been blessed to have it in my life and would like to give something back if only kudos and link love.  I'm putting this plug at the top in hopes some who stop by will check out their site and see all the great things they do to foster love of reading and writing and story in kids. If you happen to be doing Camp NaNo this year you can find me there as joywrite

This post will be organized like a blog inside a blog with recent updates stacked atop previous ones. I may be posting some updates on Twitter @Joystory and the Joystory fb fanpage. But this is where I do anything more than a line or two.  Including mini-challenges unless required to have a separate post..   

Be sure to scroll to bottom of this post for advice on how to ward off those scary nap attacks. You won't be sorry.

Ode to Dewey
by Joy Renee
We Miss You Dewey

2:00 AM -- I guess the idea of updating fell totally off my radar.  I didn't drop out. I just finally got to do the one thing I was counting on doing for the thon this time: get totally immersed for hours in a single book that I knew I was going to love.

The Book of Heaven by Patricia Storace is as amazing as I was expecting after reading the prologue the other day.  It's a tree book from the library. If it had been an ebook I'd have probably kept my focus on it the entire time.  But tree books strain my eyes.

I read in it for over three hours but before I got started I broke out my Flannery O'Connor Collected Stories to check out the beginnings of several to see how they fit or didn't the advice of Les Edgerton in Hooked.  Pretty well I guess as I got hooked into both I looked at and read both short stories entire.

I'm still going strong just like the good old days when staying up the full 24 was my thing.  The one thing I could do better than the majority of thoners since I had a great deal of practice at it.  My visual impairment made sustained reading iffy and even if I could sustain it I couldn't read much faster than 20 pages an hour.  So I couldn't rack up books finished or pages read but I could  hang in to the last second.  I used to do cheerleading the last two or three hours even if I'd not signed up for it.

Not anymore.  At least I'm not supposed to.  Being under treatment for a mood disorder and ADD I'm supposed to stay on my med schedule which just about forces me to stay on a regular sleep schedule.

I have cheated by pushing my Trazadone from 9pm to--well as soon as I click update.  I was supposed to take it no later than midnight. Once I take it I have as little as 20 minutes or as much as 2 hours before sleep overtakes me.  My vision will blur by the 20 minute mark regardless.

So this is probably my last update.  I'm going to take my Nexus 7 to bed and read an ebook while waiting on the Traz to kick in for I don't want to get caught out and about once it kicks in.  It makes me feel and behave as tho drunk.  Dizzy + 90% blind + ADD + sleep walking are not a good mix.

3:00 PM -- Have been reading the flash fiction collection 420 Characters by Lou Beach.  These little stories were originally written as status updates on a major social network.  Somewhere online I saw were someone said it was facebook.  But whichever one it was they only allowed 420 characters in a status update.  Hence the title.

As I read these it strikes me how well they adhere to all the principles Les Edgerton discussed re the opening lines of a story.

Well I'll read a few more after this update (it's hard to read more than a dozen or so in one sitting as it fills up your brain with the buzzing of voices for over ten stories) and then move on to The Book of Heaven by Patricia Storace which I've been holding back like some kind of dessert.

1:00 PM -- I spent over an hour hanging out on the blog, watching vids and catching up on each of the hours.  Then I loaded an ARC I've had since last fall, Complexity and the Arrow of Time a book of essays by scientists, on my Nexus 7 but it was a PDF which doesn't work well on the Androids for me.

I need the font to be large enough and yet not have to scroll sideways.  The Adobe Android aps do allow text reflow now but it still limits the the font size and the formatting is frustrating with lines broke in mid word and pages ending in single lines at top of screen.  This does not work any better with my visual impairment than having font the size of caterpillar footprints or lines I have to follow into the next room.

So I fiddled with that for too long and finally just opened the book on my laptop.  It's not portable that way tho and the long lines are hard to scan.  But at least they are intact.  After reading the Intro essay tho I decided I'm just no into complex science philosophy for the Thon.  So I'm moving on.

Lunch first.  Time for those carrots in ginger, molasses and butter sauce.

10:00 AM -- Just finished Hooked: Write Fiction That Grabs Readers at Page One and Never Lets Go by Les Edgerton  The link is to my review posted last night after I'd reached 80%

Think I'll go scope out the Thon blog before I pick up another book.

5:00 AM -- The Kickoff Meme:

  • 1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today? From my mother's house in Longview WA where I grew up.  At my desk to start with.
  • 2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? The Book of Heaven by Patricia Storace
  • 3) Which snack are you most looking forward to? Lightly cooked baby carrots in a molasses and ginger butter sauce. 
  • 4) Tell us a little something about yourself! I was recently diagnosed ADD at age 55.  An example of what that means in my quotidian is what happened this morning when I had to spend the first fifteen minutes looking for my glasses in a panic I wouldn't find them before 5.  More examples in my recent post ADDlepated.
  • 5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to?  Participate in the mini-challenges and other social activities.  The last two times I hermited with the books because sustained reading was what I hungered for but both times I came away feeling deprived.

[I have this scheduled to go live at 4:44.  But if this bracketed paragraph is still here on top after 5 I don't have my eyes unglued enough to check in yet.  I will be here soon as I can.]

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